A couple of quick injury notes for Friday. Auburn has 4 guys on the mend. You already know about CF Trent Mummey and SS Casey McElroy but you can add 2B Justin Hargett and OF Justin Fradejas to the fold as well:
Pawlowski said centerfielder Justin Fradejas will likely be out “for a while” after injuring his hand Friday. Fradejas will see a hand specialist in Birmingham today, Pawlowski said
Fradejas could still be available to pinch run, like he did Saturday against SEMO. His speed is definitely needed in key baserunning situations.
Hargett took a nubber during warmups and looked a bit out of wack Sunday (0-5, 2ks). However, it didn’t affect his fielding at all in the final game. He still turned a good double play and still had his jump.
The best silver lining is for SS Casey McElroy:
Shortstop Casey McElroy, who missed the weekend with a broken middle finger on his throwing hand, could return Friday against Missouri [AUPPL note: actually we play Boston College Friday], but “that’s probably as close to a Friday decision as possible,” Pawlowski said.
So again, that’s a good sign. Justin Bryant settled in nicely on Sunday as a replacement but it would be nice to have CMac back. I’d rather not rush it though if at all possible. I’d rather have him 100% a week later than 70% now. It sill looks good for a return before SEC play and maybe even before the Arizona State roadtrip.
I don’t know if Kevin Patterson was injured or what, but he didn’t see the field Saturday or Sunday. I’ll chalk that up to the pitching matchups. SEMO trotted out 2 lefties for the final two games and KP tends to struggle with LHP. I’ll try to find out more.
There was an odd moment Saturday. Auburn had a little video presentation called “Hot Seat Saturday” where a player interviews another player (think of it like the "Inside the Tiger Cage” bits that used to run during the Auburn Football Review). The two players participating? Casey McElroy and Trent Mummey. Two guys who missed the weekend due to injury.
Back to Mummey for a bit. He’s on crutches but is still a key part of the team. He was the first one out of the dugout to congratulate guys when they came off the field this weekend. Still hobbling a bit, but we’ll see if he’s off the sticks for the Miami (OH) series.
Another note that didn’t make it into the recap. I caught Football Coach Gene Chizik at the game, enjoying the Saturday matchup with his son. Good to see the Chiz enjoying everything Auburn has to offer (I NEVER saw Tommy Tuberville at the baseball games). Al Borges is a different story. I don’t think Coach Al missed a game while he was at Auburn. He was always there with his kid, enjoying the game and just being a Dad. Chiz was the same way.
The past weekend was an oddity just because of the officiating. Of the top of my head I can remember 3 balks called during the game (1 on Auburn pitchers, 2 on SEMO). Balks are always a tough call to make and I don’t know if it was a league rule to watch for them more or what, but nonetheless they were called and it always messes up a pitcher’s rhythm to get flagged for one.
Before Auburn fans get up in arms about not sweeping SEMO, they need to calm down. It happens. Look at this way. Auburn might have dropped their first opener since 1998, but it picked up a series opening win (something it didn’t do last year). It can happen to any team on any given weekend. Just look at Texas, the #1 team going into the weekend, who dropped a series to New Mexico to start the year.